Plan needed before pool can be funded

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Adams County Supervisors are wise to put the brakes on a plan to construct a community swimming pool until the many questions about the project are answered.

Representatives from a City of Natchez committee designated to help determine how to spend donations by Magnolia Bluffs Casino earmarked for community development recently approached Supervisor Darryl Grennell about the county’s participation in a swimming pool project.

The money donated by the casino — part of its lease agreement with the city — would amount to approximately $500,000 over a two-year period. The committee wants the county to match that amount and use the money to construct a community swimming pool.

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Demery Grubbs, the county’s finance advisor, told the supervisors Monday key decisions about the project, like who would own the facility, how it would be managed and where it would be located, need to be addressed before the county commits to being a part of the project.

The county has agreed to meet with representatives from the Natchez-Adams County Recreation Commission within the next week to discuss the swimming pool matter, as well as other items the commission may want to include in the first phase of a recreation plan.

At first glance, a community swimming pool seems a good idea. However, previous community pools here have been unsuccessful.

Community swimming pools are costly projects — expensive to construct, expensive to manage properly and expensive to insure.

Having a plan to adequately fund all phases of such a project should be complete before the venture is undertaken, particularly if the county were simply diving into the project alone.